‘I’ve always wanted to draw for a living I think, or be a pro skateboarder or a famous musician, and definitely wanted to be a wrestler like Ultimate Warrior at some point, but mainly I just wanted to make pictures. I studied my art foundation at Suffolk College, then I went to study illustration at the Cambridge School of Art (Cambridge Anglia Ruskin University). At the time my illustration style was really different to what it is now, I used loads of handdrawn elements with lots of colour and texture. I used to try and make as complex images as I could. I think I struggled for a long time trying to develop a way of communicating my ideas visually in a way I was happy with. I got as far as I could with this style, I was doing quite a few commissions consistently but was mainly doing graphic design work. This is when I started using Adobe Illustrator regularly and applying this to my own work.’
‘I felt like I had to reinvent my illustration output, which happened really when I started experimenting properly with screen printing and risograph printing, and also vector work. My work wasn’t lending itself to print processes other than digital prints. So I started taking out textures, using bold shapes and line, using limited colour palettes and something definitely clicked for me and this process really helped me develop my illustration style. I finally felt like I could communicate my ideas and concepts directly, without using 100s of layers in Photoshop.
The way I work now starts of with a sketch then this is used as a basis of the vector illustration but it always ends up being completely different to what I originally had in mind for the final piece. I kind of just see what happens most of the time!
This process of vector work and change in visual style only happened recently, probably the beginning of 2013 when I was asked to be in the illustration collective Brothers of the Stripe (BOTS) which was such a proud moment for me as I have been following the guys’ work for a few years prior to this, either through looking at cool work online or asking members to exhibit in charity illustration shows I used to put on a few years back for Red Cross and Oxfam.’
‘Since being in BOTS we have done so many shows and events. Particular highlights have been exhibiting at Pick Me Up graphic arts fair in 2013 and 2014, which was such an amazing experience and exhibiting and meeting with so many amazing illustrators was completely overwhelming and inspiring.
We also have exhibited, done live drawing events, drawn and painted murals and run workshops for the Victoria & Albert Museum, Eye Candy Festival, Brompton Bikes, ELCAF and loads more. It’s been a really busy couple of years for us and I’m still so grateful to be a part of it all!’
‘I have recently been signed to George Grace illustration agency, which was a massive personal achievement for me and I’m so happy to be on such a great agency alongside some seriously talented individuals. At the moment I’m working on a few personal projects, and I have a few collaborations coming up which should be up online soon.’